Things, they are a-changin’. About a year and a half ago we moved into this house after being homeless for four and a half months. It doesn’t sound like much, but when you have no idea where you’ll be spending the night or if you’ll ever get out of the situation you’re in…it’s a long time! January 2011 we moved in here and were relieved we finally had a home. Somewhere to sleep. Something that was OURS that no one except the landlord could take away.
February through September we were still grateful we had a house, but we were engaged in financial battle, not knowing if we’d have enough money coming in for rent and the bills (utilities, nothing extra). Sometimes we didn’t and the water was shut off a couple of times (we weren’t sacrificing the air conditioning and lights).
After that things slowly got a bit better. We had entered the stage where, yes, we could pay rent and WOOT we had enough to pay the bills…but nothing else. We scraped by for a few more months, trying to be grateful that we were taking care of ourselves BY OURSELVES and trying not to be depressed seeing seemingly everyone around us with STUFF. We weren’t even asking for lots of stuff…you have no idea the thrill I got when I could purchase my own bath towels. It had been a long time since I had bought anything for myself that I picked out. I was grateful to people who gave us things that made our lives easier (Matt’s boss furnished our whole house!! We had been sleeping on a blanket on the floor.) but buying our own stuff was an amazing thing.
My best friend gifted us with a toaster, coffeemaker and microwave. I happily accepted. You have no idea how much I missed toast! And being able to brew your own coffee when you want it — it was a small thing that most people take for granted. These days? We’re pretty much thankful for everything.
With the tax return we were able to get some major things. The washer and dryer (they’ve paid for themselves in what we save by not going to the laundromat, and not having to pile what clothes we had and walk 30 minutes on the side of the highway to the laundromat with a baby? PRICELESS) and we bought a brand new, 12 year old truck that needs work and we’ll be paying on for years after it kicks the bucket. But we’re not complaining! We don’t have to walk anymore. YAY!!
We get depressed sometimes, but The Man and I nudge each other and say “One step at a time. A year ago we didn’t have anything.’ Or “A year ago you were working two jobs and making less than you are at your one job now.”
Recently, The Man (and I via phone) picked out curtains for The Toddler’s bedroom. Again…it’s the little things. All our rooms have blinds (old beat up blinds) only. Curtains are a luxury. The Man set about hanging new blinds in The Toddler’s room and then hung curtains.
“You should really be helping me!” He called from the depths of her room.
“How hard is it to hang curtains? I’m sure you’re fine!” I replied from my perch on the couch. (I’m sure I was doing something important.)
“Come look at these, see if you can fix them!”
“Fix?” *heavy sigh* (looking at curtains) “Uh…you don’t have the curtain rod in the right place….and….this panel is just totally upside down.”
“I told you!”
“Oh my god, calm down….wait. I can’t get the rod out of the thingy to get the curtains off.”
(He unhinges the rod thingy and hands it to me. I show him the rod pocket and insert the rod in the right place.)
“Wait! Aren’t you doing that one too?” He says, pointing at the other panel on the rod.
“Well you have to do that one first. The other end doesn’t come off.”
“Oh good Lord.”
“I told you I needed help. Geez, how many people does it take to hang curtains?”
“Two apparently..” He walks away shaking his head. I call after him “This is why people get married — so they can hang curtains!”
After that he hung the other blind and curtains and realized he got 3 long panels and 1 short panel. We had to remove them, I folded them and we had to go back to the store for either 3 more short ones or 1 more long one. We can’t do anything right the first time…except for The Toddler…we did really great with her.
Finally her bedroom has new blinds that aren’t broken and hanging every which way, and new curtains. It almost looks like a real bedroom. Someday maybe…paint? 🙂